Private equity firms recapitalize Hilco
GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. — Two private equity companies have joined with the management team at Hilco Plastics Holdings LLC in a recapitalization that will provide funding to support continued growth.
White Wolf Capital LLC of New York and Gemini Investors of Wellesley, Mass., joined in the recapitalization of Grand Rapids-based Hilco.
Hilco is a growing, profitable injection molder that will be able to use the funding to achieve its growth potential, said Matt Miller, a managing director of BlueWater Partners LLC, a Grand Rapids financial adviser that worked with Hilco on the transition. The move also provided funds for a partner in the company to retire.
Current employees will remain with Hilco, which has two facilities in Grand Rapids and a third site in the Detroit suburb of Armada Township.
Hilco has injection molding, overmolding, insert molding, gas-assist production and compression molding as well as a hard-coating system.
Speciality Manufacturing expands
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. — The Specialty Manufacturing Inc. division of Providien LLC has expanded, reconfigured and remodeled its San Diego plant.
SMI's capabilities include pressure, twin-sheet, vacuum and thin-gauge forming.
“When we acquired SMI about two years ago, it became apparent the company was growing and would need additional space,” said Jeffrey Goble, president and CEO of Scottsdale-based Providien.
For the growth, SMI leased a 37,000-square-feet building adjacent to its longtime 25,000-square-foot leased home in San Diego's Sorrento Valley neighborhood. SMI doubled the size of its toolroom to 4,000 square feet by moving the function to the newer location.
In a final step, racking installations were completed in July.
Plastics News' March 5 ranking of North American thermoformers said SMI employs 58, operates 17 thermoforming lines and does estimated sales of $13.5 million.
Sepro, Stäubli highlight partnership
FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, GERMANY — French automation company Sepro Robotique and Swiss player Stäubli Robotics are partnering to deliver five- and six-axis robots for injection molding, at the upcoming Fakuma 2012 trade show in Friedrichshafen.
Sepro will demonstrate two new examples of the new products at its booth:
* A Sepro 5X line featuring a three-axis beam robot, equipped with a Stäubli two-axis wrist. The result: a robot with five axes of motion. The 5X robots can run on injection molding presses with clamping forces ranging from 30-800 tons.
* The Sepro 6X Visual line of six-axis, articulating-arm robots manufactured for Sepro by Stäubli. These robots can serve presses from 20-4,000 tons.
Both robots will be controlled by Sepro's Visual 3 controller, which was developed specially for injection molding.
Fakuma will run Oct. 16-20.
Sepro is based in La Roche-sur-Yon, France. Stäubli Robotics is in Horgen, Switzerland.
Linear Mold adds more space in Mich.
LIVONIA, MICH. — Mold maker Linear Mold & Engineering Inc. has expanded its operations in Livonia to accommodate extra room for its toolmaking operations as well as space for a growing injection molding business.
Linear opened in 2003 and added more space with a 2005 acquisition. With another 21,000 square feet of manufacturing space now open, the company has a total of 57,000 square feet in Livonia.
The company produces tools for injection molding and compression molding and now has nine injection molding presses ranging in size from 33-1,000 tons, President and CEO John Tenbusch said in an Aug. 24 news release.
Most of the molding capacity is geared for mold tryouts, validation and prototype production, but Linear is seeing increased demand for production runs as well, Tenbusch said.